The creators at Healthy Meal Plans have created an online meal planning platform and have challenged me to test it. I accepted the challenge, and here is what I think!
Disclosure - I was compensated for my time to try the website, provide my feedback, and write this post to share my thoughts. All thoughts and comments made in this post are my own.
I am probably a bit old school in the way I meal plan.
I am typically a pen and paper kind of meal planner and haven't really got into the habit of using a meal planning website or app.. until now.
Healthy Meal Plans challenged me to try their meal planning website for a week, and see if it could change my mind about online meal planning tools.
First of all, I wanted to see what Healthy Meal Plans was about.
- It is a FREE online meal planning tool. FREE?! Yes, totally free to use the platform.
- The recipes are all created and tested by the owners. They do not import outside recipes from blogs. This is honestly a really big reason why I have resisted supporting meal planning and recipe saving apps. Importing recipes from blogs and then generating sales from them is theft.
- The platform is incredibly user friendly and easy to use.
- The recipes and platform were created by two Canadian moms!
Healthy Meal Plans platform is really great for you if:
- You want to spend 20-30 minutes once a week to build a meal plan and have an automatic grocery list generated - and not end up in the depths of Pinterest recipe searching.
- You have food intolerances, preferences to work around - this platform is exceptional at filtering OUT ingredients.
- You are looking for a free, easy to use meal planning platform.
- You follow a particular way of eating and want to create a meal plan with only those recipes.
- If you really don't like building a meal plan, you can purchase subscription meal plans (that you can still customize). Once purchased, the meal plans are loaded into your account. If you purchase a multi week plan, you get all weeks loaded at once- which is a really nice feature.
This platform is not for you if:
You are looking for a recipe repository platform where you can save recipes from other blogs and recipe books and create meal plans based on those recipes.
Here are the features I used and liked with this platform when I used it!
New recipes are added weekly and are related to the current season - I don't have to build meal plans with the same recipes forever!
You can scope out the recipes (and try them) without signing up to use it as a meal planning tool.
You can select to have recipes excluded (or included) based on preferences. If you don't like avocado, you can search the database and have all the avocado recipes excluded. Likewise if you only want to see recipes that meet a specific dietary considerations, such as vegetarian, you can easily filter to see only vegetarian recipes.
You can easily adjust serving sizes! If you have company planned for one night, you can increase serving sizes for just that meal for just that day. This also makes the app flexible for singles, couples, and large families.
Search for recipes based on what I had in my freezer! If I have chicken and beef in my freezer, I could build my plan with recipes including the main ingredients I already had.
There are "non recipe" items to add, like hard boiled eggs, a bagel with cream cheese, yogurt. In the real world, most people are not cooking full recipes for every meal, and you can easily add these items into your plan, and they load to the grocery list!
My favorite recipes so far!
Questions I had when I tried Healthy Meal Plans?
Is there an app for this?
The platform is optimized for the meal planning on desktop. The drag and drop feature that makes it very easy to plan on desktop, but makes it challenging to do your actual planning on a tablet or phone.
But, the website is mobile friendly, so I was able to easily access and use my grocery list straight from my phone at the store.
This also means, I could easily pull up the recipes on my phone while I was in my kitchen prepping.
What if I want to add a family favorite (like my Lazy Lasagna!) to my meal plan?
It is really easy to create a placeholder in the meal plan for your own recipe.
The only drawback here is that you can't enter the ingredients when you add your own recipe. You do need to manually add the ingredients to your grocery list for the recipes added to the plan that are not within the platform.
What if I need to add non food items to my grocery list?
You can easily add your dog food and toilet paper to your generated grocery list.
My overall thoughts and recommendation
Healthy Meal Plans is a well built, intuitive meal planning platform!
It is free and there is zero risk to giving it a try. If you want to try the subscription specialty meal plans, you can use code MEALPLANADDICT to save 25%
If you give it a try, comment about your experience in the comments here. I am curious to know what you think of it to!